Author's Notes and Warnings: This is violent with very dark themes (abuse and slavery), but it is treated (I hope, and I tried) with sensitivity, and little is described; mostly it's just alluded to. So, high PG or PG-13. Thanks go to Layren for her persistence in getting me to write this - and holding my hand all the way until the end. :) You rock.
Secondly, this starts out with a vignette from Xanatos point of view (which inspired the rest of the story - Obi-Wan's journal).
Loose mornings are mornings where there is nothing to be done. The sun is bright, the sky clear, and there is nothing on the horizon. Not a trouble in sight. Today, it feels like a loose morning.
I wake up in the morning feeling refreshed. I get out of my silk bed, put some pants on, and walk out to my balcony. The stone of the rail feels cool against my arms as I lean against it, The sun has just risen, in time the stone will heat, but now I can feel the warm sun on my face and cool stone beneath my feet, against my hands. I push my black hair out of my face, absentmindedly tracing the scar on my cheek as I do so. Not quite a nervous habit, I only allow myself to do it when I’m alone, but it reminds me of the past, and the present. Not that the remembrance of that scar is the only thing I focus on, but it’s important to me, even now.
I yawn a few times, the sun still steady, unlike me when I’ve just woken, and then walk back inside. I go out of my bedroom into the hall, looking around for any sign of blood. No, it is all gone. I smile, pleased and satisfied.
I walk downstairs. As usual, there is no one there, though a full breakfast awaits me. I have no worries about the food being poisoned; they know what would happen if I died. “I suffer you to live,” I mutter to myself, then shake my head and laugh.
I ate my breakfast, which was excellently made. I made a note to reward them. I’m not a cruel man, after all. I reward those who obey me. Of course, it’s very, very difficult for them to do just that, and so when they do good, I reward them. It confuses them, I know, makes them doubt themselves. But sometimes I do honestly enjoy rewarding good work. I always do with my employees. I’m as good at rewarding those who please me as destroying those who don’t.
I go outside, to the beachfront. No one is in sight, though I feel them nearby. I sit down on a wooden chair, letting my feet sink into the warming sand. The sea spreads out before me like it was made for me. It is a darker blue than most seas, about the color of my eyes. Dark blue. I sigh happily.
There’s a beautiful thing about being in charge; everything is done just the way you like it. The beach I kept as it was, already perfect, but I had them build and tear down the house and patio four times before I was satisfied. Though getting a new architect every time was a bit of a pain, the last one still lives rather well.
Today, there is nothing to do. It is my ‘day off’. My subordinates are trust-worthy; they know better than to subvert me, and they also know what happens when they serve me well. It makes them loyal. That I do care for them, to some degree, also helps. Good help is just so hard to find, I keep it whenever possible.
“Obi-Wan!” I call out suddenly, earlier than usual. I feel a surge of panic in the Force, but it subsides quickly.
Obi-Wan comes to me from under the patio. So that’s where he was staying out of my sight. They could only be in my sight when I permitted it, when I requested it, but how they obeyed that order was up to them; I’m sure there are many hiding spots such as Obi-Wan’s all over the property. The boy is growing up now. He’s getting taller, almost gangly, except his Jedi training kicks in and he appears more graceful than he should. His hair is finally grown out properly from the shave I gave all of them in the beginning, to get rid of status reminders such as Padawan braids. It reaches his shoulders.
I feel like a parent when I think it, but sometimes it’s hard for me to believe that Obi-Wan is nineteen now.
“Yes, Master?” Obi-Wan says.
I point at the seat next to me. Not the ground, the chair, which is more than I generally permit. “Sit.”
He sits warily. Obi-Wan is an interesting person, I think. I initially took an interest in him because he was my replacement, Qui-Gon’s Padawan, and that had galled at me. But I soon realized he really was unique. While most of the Jedi either hated me or tolerated me in that stay-on-the-light-side way, Obi-Wan was neither of those things. He was a little afraid of me, of course, but he appeared to actually see me as a human being, instead of a Dark Side monster or deluded, insane individual. Or at least, he sees me as more than that. Even more unusual, especially considering his age – fourteen – when he came into my service with the rest, was that he actually dared to disagree with me. Several times. Even after being punished. But he didn’t do it just to disagree, nor did he particularly do it unwisely.
He has found some sort of balance in dealing with me. I don’t understand it, but I like it. Overall.
“Your back?” I say politely.
He turns slightly so I can see. The marks on his back have scabbed, though it looks more recent than it should. He must have cleaned up the blood in the hallway himself, reopening the wounds – not doubt trying to spare Qui-Gon, who can never stand it when I hurt Obi-Wan. Of course, Obi-Wan did strike at me, which I would have killed others for. But it was justified; I had threatened to kill Qui-Gon once and for all, instead of making him a servant – nice substitute for ‘slave’ – on my estate.
I nod. “Make sure they heal well.”
“I will, Master.” That’s another thing I require, mostly because it grates at the Jedi especially. But what did they expect? I won. I destroyed the Temple, I overthrew the New Republic . . . It was mine to enjoy.
Obi-Wan is biting his lip. It’s a nervous habit, which gives me some clues into his mind, so I haven’t mentioned it in our talks.
“What is it?” I ask. He’ll answer, of course. He can keep his mouth shut if I don’t ask, but if I do, he has to answer honestly and completely. Unlike the Jedi Masters, he is not so skilled at lying, and I always know.
“Some of the collars are getting too small on the children,” Obi-Wan tells me.
Ah. I nod. The collars are what I use to keep the Jedi in line. He usually is the one who does so; I’ve threatened to not bother to change the collar sizes out of spite before. Of course, they don’t hinder Force ability, but they do all connect, and if I die, so do they all – the women, the children, and a few hostages I have here and there. It’s how I keep the Jedi in line. Naturally, only I can undo the collars. It can be a pain sometimes in having to change them on the growing children, but worth it, I think. I don’t want to give anyone else that power, and they couldn’t be made to stretch without taking away security. “I’ll take care of it,” I assure Obi-Wan. I’m not a cruel man.
Obi-Wan nods absentmindedly, then hurriedly says, “Thank you, Master.” He forgets, sometimes, but I think he believes he’s only come close to forgetting that ‘Master’. I let him get away with it.
I wonder if I’m going soft.
“So what do you want to talk about this morning, Obi-Wan?” I say. It is our weekly ritual to talk on these ‘day off’ mornings. Well, my ritual, at any rate. I always make him pick the topic; it keeps him on his toes, wondering which to pick, which will please me, or if he should even bother trying.
Today, Obi-Wan surprises me. “Let’s talk about love.”
“Love?” I say, surprised. “Romantic love? Familial love?”
Obi-Wan hesitates. “Familial.”
I look at him, absurdly proud of his bravery. “Be more specific.”
Obi-Wan almost shrugs, then thinks better of the action, remembering his back. “How about the love of a son for his father, and vice versa?”
Very daring. I lift my eyebrows, curious, a little twinge of anger rising.
He hesitates again, and I suddenly know there’s more, and that more is important, so I wait.
“Or maybe that between a superior and subordinate?”
That makes me truly pause. “Or a Master, and his slave? His Jedi slave, perhaps?”
Obi-Wan looks down, and he’s nearly hyperventilating. He’s trying to calm himself down, probably cursing himself for his forwardness.
I take his chin, make him look at me. He has not guessed wrong, and I smile at him. I don’t know why I’m willing to let him know this, but I am. “I think it can exist,” is all I say. Then I lean back, looking out at the sea again. “Pick another topic, Obi-Wan.”
And that’s all we say on the matter.
It was a lovely loose morning.
We were supposed to go to Melida/Daan today. That’s when everything just diverged from reality.
I’m shaking as I write this... Qui-Gon gave it to me, said to use it. He and I left the Temple early, for a walk. Qui-Gon was telling me about old missions, similar to the one we were about to go on. Then he just paused, in the middle of the street, and told me something horrible was going to happen.
About a second later, it did. The Temple blew up. Was bombed. I’m not sure how to say it. People starting running and screaming – we weren’t that far away – and Qui-Gon and I ran back. But there was nothing. Nothing. The Temple had been leveled. That’s all I could see. Everything was twisted and burned. We felt it, too. When they died. Like screaming, then sudden silence, so sudden it just wasn’t natural. It wasn’t meant to be. How could this have happened? I think I’m still …
I don’t remember it, but Qui-Gon dragged us off to the lower levels. I’m sure I didn’t know why at the time, but Qui-Gon feared there would be more attacks, and that’s why he didn’t go to the Senate, or anywhere else we might be expected. So that’s where we are now. There are five of us sharing this hotel room. One of the Jedi in here lost his apprentice. He just keeps staring at nothing. Qui-Gon has started contacting other Jedi.
I want to sleep. But I can’t. I just can’t. How am I –
Most of the Senate is dead. We got that news today. That’s a plus, was how Master Windu put it in a very dry tone. We laughed; I think we’re starting to get morbid. Don’t’ soldiers use a lot of black humor in war to stay sane?
Xanatos has offered a huge reward on any Jedi’s head, alive only. He doubled it for Qui-Gon … and me. I’m not sure why he cares about me, but I think Qui-Gon does. He got very still, very quiet. I tried to talk to him, and he told me to meditate. I think I will.
--- Entry 18
I don’t know why he isn’t killing us. Does he want us alive to lord over us? To have Jedi at his feet? Or to kill us all at once? No one is talking about it, but I know everyone is thinking about it.
We moved again today. Getting around is getting harder. Xanatos seemed distracted for a while; I heard he was dealing with the new Trade Federation and – usurpers. But we knew our reprieve wouldn’t last, and it didn’t. Jumping planets helped, though, I think. The father we run, the harder it is for them to find us. They’re growing in size, but since Xanatos took over the Republic, he’s had to mostly concentrate his forces and Offworld employees on that. He doesn’t trust those already in the positions, so he had to replace most of them, and that left him short on manpower. We’re all calculating how much this gives us, though most of the time I’m busy with other things.
It’s strange. I have responsibility now. The Knights and Masters are busy with other things, so the Padawans like me take care of the young ones, the initiates. I never knew how hard that was.
--- Entry 22
I’m mad at Qui-Gon. He won’t talk to me. Every time Xanatos comes up – which is often – he just shuts down. I can see it, I know everyone else can, but it’s like a parody of awkwardness, none of us can actually do anything about it. He’s started telling me, “Because I say so, Padawan,” to keep me quiet.
--- Entry 30
With the realization that the Sith existed – past tense – Qui-Gon has opened up to me again. I think he realized that it wasn’t all his fault, Xanatos or the destruction of the Temple. Xanatos wanted all those things, but getting in league with the Sith is what made it happen. The Sith, that we didn’t even know still existed. Would they have destroyed us if Xanatos’ hadn’t?
[break in entry]
Qui-Gon wants me to point out in my ‘historical journal’ that I’m using the past tense in reference to the Jedi. I’ll stop doing that now.
--- Entry 42
We’re getting reports that Xanatos’ is closing in. Our options are disappearing fast. We’re trying to spread the children among the general population now. It was my idea – they’ll be safe away from us. Jedi are what Xanatos’ is really after, the children with barely any training are just a bonus. I hope we save them all.
--- Entry 48
The Jedi are worried. So am I.
--- Entry 56 [last entry]
That first night, when I couldn’t go to sleep, Qui-Gon gave me a datapad and told me to write. He then interrupted me in the middle of said writing, and helped me to go sleep. I always thought that was a bit strange, that he would tell me that and then stop me in the middle. I think it was because he wanted to read it, but I’m not sure.
I think it’s slightly disturbing that he’s gotten me another datapad to write in – most of it’s features disabled, this one being the only one intact – when we’ve just been captured by Xanatos.
--- Entry 1
Xanatos gave it to him, after reading what was left of my first damaged journal – some entries apparently lost. I wonder if he’s reading this. If you are, you can go to hell.
--- Entry 2
Qui-Gon has told me there’s no transmitter on the datapad, though he can’t say if it will be taken from me or not. He says it’s up to me if I write in it or not, but he doesn’t seem what harm it can do. He doesn’t think Xanatos’ is interested in the journal, he just enjoys playing with our minds. That sounds like Xanatos.
--- Entry 3
I don’t actually remember being captured. Our ship was hit so hard I was knocked unconscious almost immediately. I don’t remember the boarding party, or the fighting. Or, I suppose, the dying. I remember being on the ship, then my next memory is of Qui-Gon holding me, apologizing.
That seems like the wrong word.
--- Entry 4
It’s been a few days. After being captured, we were stuck in a small cell together. Everything was taken from us, including our clothing – but not this datapad – though we were given some dirty pants and shirts. No shoes.
Today, they dragged us out. I didn’t realize how many other Jedi had been captured. But I’m getting ahead of myself. After being dragged out, these collars were put on us. They look almost like necklaces, they’re very thin if completely solid. And colored gold. But I knew they were collars, and I think everyone else did, too.
The Jedi that lost his Padawan didn’t cooperate, so they shot him. He’s with the Force now.
Considering that there is no death, I wonder if that’s a viable alternative to our current circumstances.
After having the collars put on us, we were dragged into another room, and that’s where all the Jedi that Xanatos had captured were. I think there were about 200 of us in all. I also think we would have chosen that moment to rebel, except Xanatos immediately started talking, and he started with the important stuff first.
If he dies, so do we. Not just the adults, but the children, too, and various hostages Xanatos has all around the galaxy. The collars are linked.
He stood before us on a dais. We all just stared at him. Even the children didn’t make a sound. He didn’t seem to care.
He informed us that 100 of us would be slaves on his estate. The others would be nearby in a prison camp.
I can’t think of anything else to say.
--- Entry 5
Qui-Gon asked me if I forgave him today. I almost said that there was nothing to forgive, then thought better of that – not only because he would never accept that, but because it wasn’t entirely true.
I told him I forgave him for not seeing Xanatos’ heading towards the Dark. And that’s all there was to forgive.
--- Entry 6
Xanatos is a weird fellow.
I understand that he wanted us near him, in hindsight. He wants us near him so he can more easily see what we’re up to – and so that he can see and participate in our humiliation, namely, our slavery. It also makes it that much harder for the free Jedi to attempt a rescue. (I think they shouldn’t try. I think they should rebuild, wherever they are, and defeat Xanatos in the future, when they can.)
I don’t understand this new rule of his, that we should never be in his sight unless he requests it. Like we should be invisible slaves? Doesn’t that, I don’t know, defeat the purpose?
--- Entry 7
--- Entry 8
I’m so angry right now I can hardly write. Qui-Gon shoved me back here and told me to keep quiet, that the other Jedi would handle this, but I
--- Entry 9
Qui-Gon says I’m a damn fool. I’ve never him curse before. It was interesting, even in the haze of pain that I was in at the time. The haze has lifted a bit since, but it’s still hard for me to move. Xanatos beat me pretty badly. I won’t be able to walk for days, Qui-Gon says. I can’t disagree.
I told Xanatos he shouldn’t have hit Kel. He didn’t take many initiates to the estate – I think besides Kel I’m the youngest – and you’d think he would know that a child, like Kel, who is only eight, hardly has a chance of proper control. So he met Xanatos’ eyes. So. What.
That’s what I told Xanatos. He looked at me for a second, and I could see surprise in his eyes. Then he beat me.
Qui-Gon says that I shouldn’t have done anything. That he and the other Jedi are more capable of handling Xanatos, not only diplomatically, but punishment wise as well. Which makes sense, but I don’t think Xanatos would have cared about either of those facts. I think he has a knee-jerk reaction to any full Jedi. But Qui-Gon may be right. I doln’t know. I’m tired.
Qui-Gon is telling me I should rest now.
--- Entry 10
Qui-Gon finally slipped. He called Xanatos by name. That was yesterday. I spent all of that day taking care of him, while the other Jedi carried out my duties, most of which were simple things in keeping the estate up and clean, washing dishes, simple things.
I want to be angry, but I’m too exhausted. Qui-Gon has varied between furious and heart-broken. Not for Xanatos, but for us. All of us. I think he thinks he deserves something worse than this, sometimes. But he’s never said it, so we can’t tell him he’s wrong. And now, I’m mostly concerned with keeping these injuries uninfected. Xanatos knows how to use a stick, and I knew somehow that Qui-Gon would make a terrible patient.
--- Entry 18
I dropped the datapad today. I think I lost a few entries. I don’t think it matters. I wrote them, that’s enough.
--- Entry 21
Qui-Gon and I had our weekly discussion again. Xanatos went to bed late, so we started late, but it was interesting. I never knew Dooku was his Master. Qui-Gon told me they never really got close. He said that he thought Dooku was puzzled by him sometimes, like there was something about him he couldn’t figure out. Dooku was apparently more connected to the Unified Force, like me, but while he never disparaged the Living Force (as I would often tease), he just didn’t seem particularly interested in it. And that Dooku was Yoda’s Padawan? Never knew that either.
Which reminds me, I’m glad the old troll, as Qui-Gon affectionately calls him, escaped. We heard the news about that yesterday. Master Windu gave this huge grin, I think it almost split his face.
I bet Xanatos was pissed.
--- Entry 22
I’m fifteen today.
--- Entry 23
Qui-Gon says I’m still advancing pretty well in my training. (Xanatos has ignored the practice of the Knights training the Padawans.) We don’t have lightsabers, and we can’t spar even bare-handed often, but a lot of what a Jedi is, is mental.
Qui-Gon is proud of me.
--- Entry 24
Xanatos has taken an interest in me. Qui-Gon is not happy.
Xanatos has always gone out of his way to humiliate Qui-Gon and I, by making us do the most humiliating work. I don’t know why he hates me – punishment by association? – but he evidently still hates Qui-Gon. Unlike most Jedi, Xanatos stayed close to his father, and he refuses to forget the loss, or even accept it in any small way. I see him tracing the scar on his cheek sometimes, when he thinks we’re not around. We’ve gotten used to being jerked around, from Xanatos wanting to ignore our existence to him watching us with glee every time reports of a Jedi’s death comes around.
Yesterday, Xanatos decided that I would serve him personally. Before that, he had let whichever Jedi do whatever we wanted, as long as all the work on his estate got done. (Besides the work in his office, of course. He has trustworthy assistants for that.) Today he informed me that I would serve him personally, which means I have to follow him around all day, waiting for any orders. Until he decides otherwise.
He also decided to temporarily assign the other Jedi to specific places. Qui-Gon is just about as far away as possible.
I’m going to miss him, but I don’t know what to do.
--- Entry 25
Xanatos watches me. He’ll say my name, so I have to appear, and then just stare at me. I don’t know why.
--- Entry 26
It’s different from the first days, when everything was so demeaning. I almost hate to say it – and I don’t use that word lightly – but I’ve gotten used to this life. It’s fairly hot most days, so it’s easy to wander around barefoot and shirtless. The weather is mostly temperate. Xanatos is the only person we really have to be careful around. Asking him to change the collars every few months – Master Windu asked last time – is one of the few moments where it’s stuck in our faces.
Except for Qui-Gon. Xanatos always waits for the required ‘Master’. I hate that.
--- Entry 27
Qui-Gon called Xanatos ‘Xanatos’ again. I don’t think he even did it on purpose, he’s fairly careful about that. It was during one of the few times I ever see Qui-Gon, when the collars were being changed. Security was everywhere, of course. But even if the Jedi were to revolt right then, all the Jedi and hostages that still had the collars would still die, if Xanatos did. Regardless of all that, when Xanatos’ changes the collars on the growing children, all the Jedi are in one place.
Qui-Gon was looking well. Tanner than ever, still strong, even working at the edges of the estate, in the gardens. He’s had pained serenity in his eyes ever since our capture, but the pained part is becoming less and less, and the Living Force shines from him. He smiled when he saw me.
I knew the instant he did it. I couldn’t hear it, Xanatos kept us all away from each other and disorganized, but I saw the realization on his face, and the satisfaction on Xanatos’. Xanatos never punishes Qui-Gon when he doesn’t deserve it – which he frequently does, as scars will attest. I don’t know why Xanatos’ bothers with the charade. We know he wants to hurt and humiliate Qui-Gon, all of us. Qui-Gon was his Master. It’s like he wants to make it seem like Qui-Gon deserves it. But no one deserves to be a slave.
Instead of beating Qui-Gon, who couldn’t resist due to the collar and consequences, he walked off and called my name.
I was afraid, but I walked to him anyway. He grabbed me by the arm, and with more strength than I expected, shook me. Then he struck me across the face. Then he looked at Qui-Gon and said, “If you won’t learn the rules, he will.”
Why? Why? I look at the words and I can’t figure out why. I wrote this all out, to study it, to remember it, and I don’t understand.
Xanatos didn’t hurt me. He just wanted it to look like he was going to. He dragged me to the house and locked me in this room, and won’t let me out. I’ve been in here nearly a day, with water. He totally ignored Qui-Gon’s pleadings. Begging. I never thought my Master would do that, and yet he did, for me. I want to cry, and I want to hurt Xanatos.
I hate this.
--- Entry 28
I’m sixteen today.
--- Entry 29
Two Jedi died today.
--- Entry 30
As a Jedi, I’m trained to have very good memory, as well as being trained in memory-retrieval techniques. But I’m going to write this down anyway.
Xanatos finally came into the room he’d kept me in the past few days. I was pretty hungry. He had given me water, plenty of it, but no food.
He came with food. A plate of fruit. I looked at it, wary, but didn’t meet his eyes. Regardless of his reason for keeping me in here, I didn’t want to be punished.
“Go ahead,” Xanatos said to me. “Eat.”
I debated saying anything, then decided he was the one who kept the food from me for so long, so I didn’t say ‘thank you, Master’, as would probably have been wise. I just grabbed the food and ate. I wanted so desperately to eat it all, and now, but I knew I’d probably vomit if I did that.
Xanatos just stood, waiting, then after a few minutes, he spoke. “The thing about Qui-Gon is that he doesn’t suffer easily. He’s courageous, brave, whatever. He withstands pain, even if he doesn’t like it. He resists, rebels. Qui-Gon is very good at that. It’s in his nature.” He paused as I said nothing. “Give him a lovely world, a life that is easy if he obeys, a life that is easy for others if he obeys . . . and he is given a dilemma. A delightful dilemma, wouldn’t you agree?”
I didn’t think; I responded. I looked him in the eyes and told him he’d fail. He would never change the man, the Jedi, that Qui-Gon Jinn was.
Xanatos looked at me for a while, a few minutes, then said, “He’s not your Master anymore.”
He beat me then. I don’t need to remember that part. He let me out of the room, after another day, yesterday. He repeated what I already knew, that I stay in a specific area, one of three, for the Jedi to sleep in – the one farthest from Qui-Gon. I gave a few of the Jedi the barebones, to try to pass along to Qui-Gon, that it was my fault I was beaten, not his. I hope it gets to him. Xanatos has been getting stricter and stricter about what we do and where.
I don’t know why Xanatos did what he did, or why he said that, at the last. Qui-Gon is my Master because I respect and love him. Xanatos merely owns me.
--- Entry 31
Xanatos changed things again. There are now three distinct groups of Jedi on the estate. Those who serve in the house and surrounding area, those in the territory just outside of that, and those who serve just outside the borders. Not that the borders mean that much; there are no walls here, just electronic tags. I looked out there a few times, there’s just more greenery and beach at the borders. Qui-Gon is still far away. At least, it feels like that.
Xanatos has taken to going on long walks, and watching Qui-Gon. Glaring, really, except he looks smug when he does it. I have no choice but to follow. I can’t even talk to Qui-Gon, because I have to stay out of sight, and Xanatos always orders Qui-Gon to be around, so he can watch my Master working as a slave. It infuriates me. I know Xanatos knows it, and I’m pretty sure Qui-Gon knows it, too.
--- Entry 32
Xanatos made Qui-Gon cut his hair. Maybe cut is the wrong word – chop off, maybe. Close to the scalp. I don’t know why this bothers me so much, but it does. Qui-Gon has always had long hair. It’s been a part of him, to me. He kept it long, almost wild, but then brushed it back. And that’s Qui-Gon, in a way, a rebel somewhat, but still calm, still a Jedi.
It was because I was seen. Xanatos was on one of his walks, I was following. I saw Qui-Gon, as usual, but this time he saw me. I saw his recognition in his eyes, in spite of how far away we were from each other. Qui-Gon looked away almost immediately, but Xanatos still noticed.
And he dragged me out of my hiding, and made Qui-Gon take a hatchet and cut off his hair.
I think Xanatos knew this would bother me.
All Qui-Gon did is close his eyes.
--- Entry 33
Xanatos has started watching me again.
--- Entry 34
My whole body hurts. Xanatos has been really angry lately, and spending more time in his office. I have to sit outside. I’m so tired.
--- Entry 35
Our rations were never huge, but Xanatos cut them in half. I’m hungry a lot now, and I imagine Qui-Gon is doing even worse. I’ve started thinking about why Xanatos is doing everything the way he is, now. Why keep us here? A lot of it is to hurt Qui-Gon, obviously. Seeing other Jedi as slaves hurts him. Seeing me as Xanatos’ (apparently) personal slave really hurts him. Being a slave is humiliating.
But we’re in warm weather, have food, clothing . . . And he doesn’t torture us. Necessarily. He beats us, probably Qui-Gon and I most of all, but there is no extended torture. Unless you count these mind games. He wants to change Qui-Gon, I know that. But why this way? I hate how Xanatos makes us so completely dependent on him for survival.
--- Entry 36
I prefer mind games. Really.
--- Entry 37
He beat me so badly yesterday that he’s letting me ‘take off’ the next three days. I can hardly move, and I can still smell my own blood, because Xanatos won’t let me wash it off or clean the wounds. He says he’ll cut rations entirely if I do. I hope I don’t infected. I hope I don’t die.
--- Entry 38
Qui-Gon attacked Xanatos today. He seemed to be expecting it; he looked practically exultant. Xanatos dragged me – in sight – around on his walk, still covered with blood. I tried really hard to use the Force to heal myself, but I’m feverish. I can tell I’m not well. Qui-Gon could too. He took one look at me, limping behind Xanatos, and he just – threw himself at him. He managed to land a few blows, then Xanatos used the Force to push him off.
When Qui-Gon went to me instead of attacking Xanatos again, Xanatos let him. For a few moments, anyway. Everything was a bit hazy, but it looked like the cut of his hair had been evened out, and I noted that weirdly it made his eyes look bluer. He talked to me. I don’t remember what he said, but it was comforting, and he said it.
Then Xanatos beat Qui-Gon. Not with a handy stick, but his own hands.
Last I saw, the Jedi were taking care of him. Xanatos dragged me back to my area, and told the Jedi they could take care of me now.
They’re trying, but it’s so damn hot.
--- Entry 39
Everything has been very confused. What am I doing in Xanatos’ house, on a mat on the floor? I have vague memories of the Jedi taking care of me, I don’t remember their names – I hardly ever see them, Xanatos always has me near him – and then ones of Xanatos, but they don’t seem like they’re in order. And I have my datapad with me, here.
And I’ve been bandaged.
--- Entry 40
Why did I do that?
So Xanatos takes to muttering under his breath, and I keep getting little glimpses in the Force of his durasteel shields slipping just a bit. It’s like it just popped out of my mouth without my brain ever being involved. Or at least my common sense. At least I didn’t get a beating.
--- Entry 41
Xanatos finally answered me today. When I first asked him, he had stared at me for a few moments, while I tried to avoid his eyes, then he just told me to keep quiet.
But today, he answered me. I don’t think I really expected his response: “I don’t live in constant fury. It’s not possible. I simply use whichever portion of the Force is convenient. And why shouldn’t I? It’s all the same Force. How can one side of life be bad, and the other good?”
I didn’t have a response for that, so I didn’t say anything. But I want to talk to Qui-Gon.
--- Entry 42
Really, the answer was obvious. There is a bad and good side to life. Or Xanatos’ wouldn’t have wished away the pain of his father’s death.
I thought about telling him that, but decided against it for obvious reasons. Common sense is working, check.
--- Entry 43
One of the other Jedi offered to mentor me. I’m not sure. Qui-Gon is still my Master.
--- Entry 44
And another thing. If life (or the Force) couldn’t have bad and good sides, why bother to do anything? Take over the galaxy? Save it? Wouldn’t things just be the same for all, equally meaningless in pain and joy?
--- Entry 45
Ouch. First he yelled at me, then he beat me. Fortunately by the time he was done with the verbal lashing, he wasn’t angry enough to do a horrible amount of damage when he got to the physical part. I’m just badly bruised, I think. I didn’t even mention what I thought about his father.
Of course, I shouldn’t have said anything at all. Slaves don’t challenge their Masters.
I miss Qui-Gon.
--- Entry 46
Xanatos upped the rations. Not quite to where they used to be, but close. He was totally calm today, his anger at me apparently totally spent. I limped around my duties, fetching this and that, cleaning up behind Xanatos. Cleaning can be strangely satisfying, but the fetching part is still demeaning.
I’m glad Qui-Gon doesn’t have to do this.
I wonder why he upped the rations. He’s so mercurial, we never know how he’s going to react. I thought Qui-Gon would be dead by now, if I’m honest with myself. And I thought he’d leave to me to die from infection, but he didn’t. He had his doctor look after me until the Jedi could take care of me again.
If he’s trying to baffle us, it’s working.
--- Entry 47
News about the galaxy doesn’t get in here often. For the most part, the same group of Jedi are on Xanatos’ estate, the new ones get sent to the prison camp. We’ve heard it isn’t so bad over there, there’s plenty of food (which we don’t always have here, due to Xanatos’ whims) and a fairly relaxed routine. After all, they all wear the collars.
But a rumor is spreading that Xanatos’ forces are meeting a wall in how far they can go. The Outer Rim has put up a massive effort, and they’re keeping him out. That’s where the Jedi are, I think.
--- Entry 48
Several of the Jedi are teaching me things now. But it’s getting harder. I’m tired all the time.
--- Entry 49
I can’t get out of my head how weird this whole thing is. What a bizarre mixture of cruelty and kindness, keeping us here, in a virtual paradise, with the only downsides that we’re all slaves who serve someone who hates us, and punishes us occasionally.
--- Entry 50
Qui-Gon has to fetch for Xanatos now. I’ve been moved out of the house, though Qui-Gon and I are still in the same area now. I can’t wait to talk to him tonight, even if he does have to suffer this new humiliation, after doing Xanatos’ gardening.
--- Entry 51
First he hugged me, than he inspected me. I didn’t mind, except it made him so angry to see the new scars. Most of us have had a growing collection. Xanatos’ security has that authority in certain situations, and I . . . well, I get most of mine personally. Or I did, at any rate.
I think Qui-Gon is relieved. He held me for hours, like a child, not like I was seventeen years old. We talked until morning, knowing we could use the Force to keep us going if need be. He noted that I’m skinny. I told him big surprise, so is he. At least, skinnier than he used to be, than he should be. Not unhealthy yet, but getting close for all of us, at least until the rations were upped.
I could see his scars too, but I didn’t comment. Most of us are running around half-naked these days, due to both the heat and the lack of good clothing for the younger children. Something I know the Jedi are planning to talk to Xanatos about. I hope it goes well.
In the meantime, I have Qui-Gon again. And he has me.
--- Entry 52
I’m privately amazed at Qui-Gon’s patience. He hasn’t snapped yet, and I’ve seen (from a distance) Xanatos order him around like stupid pet. It makes me angry, but whenever Qui-Gon feels my anger, it doesn’t help him any. So I’ve tried to stay calm about it.
Qui-Gon is surprised I still have my datapad.
--- Entry 53
He’s quieter than he used to be. But his strength hasn’t eased any. I’m not surprised at that, though Qui-Gon’s explanation of how he has changed over our separation – and before that – did surprise me, in that I hadn’t thought of it that way. He told me it’s about how you take it. If you use it to better yourself, or not. And trusting in the Force, and the eventual righting of things, even if it happens after all our deaths. He says this brings him some comfort. That we’ll be together at some point does, too.
I can already tell he’s less impulsive, over the past few days we’ve had. Not that he ever was truly impulsive, but he often just followed his instincts, regardless of what conflict it brought him. I think that’s changed.
He says I’m quieter, too, but he admitted he’s not sure if that’s a good thing. I speak out less often, but when I do, it’s not always at the wisest time. And he thinks Xanatos’ constant presence has influenced me.
He didn’t say that part. But I can tell he’s thinking it.
I told him I loved him, and that I didn’t hate Xanatos. It’s a Jedi thing, not to hate, but I don’t think he was expecting it of me. I hate what Xanatos does.
I’m just tired of hating him.
--- Entry 54
I told Qui-Gon about what Xanatos said about the Dark Side. And what I said back, though not about the beating afterwards. I think he guessed, but oh well.
He agrees with me. He seemed slightly surprised Xanatos’ bothered to answer me, and proud that I figured out what was wrong with his answer. Though I did get a lecture about baiting Xanatos. He said that others could be punished if I made Xanatos angry. I hadn’t thought of that. If it’s just me – but it’s not.
Qui-Gon asked, too, if any of the Jedi had mentored me. I said no. How can I say that not only was I hesitant about accepting it, but Xanatos didn’t like it when I even talked to another Jedi? It was never overt. But I could tell. He’d work me until I was exhausted every time I stayed up late at night, learning mental techniques and meditations from one of the Jedi. I know it’s deliberate, but I don’t know why.
I think Qui-Gon would. But I’m still not mentioning it to him.
--- Entry 55
It occurred to me that I’m not supposed to be protective, emotionally, of Qui-Gon, even as he is supposed to be for me.
--- Entry 56
I told him. What now?
--- Entry 57
I asked Qui-Gon if he attacked Xanatos, and he said no. What good would his lessons be, he said, if he didn’t follow them himself? No matter how angry? He did, very humbly, ask Xanatos what the hell he was up to with me, but Xanatos didn’t bother to answer.
So . . . Xanatos calls me into the house tonight, with Qui-Gon. He tells me that I’m forbidden to speak to Qui-Gon after today. (Which is an odd kindness, that we get to say goodbye.) And I’m back to being fetch-boy. He ordered Qui-Gon to leave, I couldn’t help staring after him, and then Xanatos stared at me for a minute or so, while I tried not to fidget.
He waved me off after finally speaking. All he said to me was, the last part in a mutter, “At least you show it on your face. And the Force.”
I hesitate to guess what that means, exactly. Not about Qui-Gon’s control – but about me.
--- Entry 58
I can’t talk now. It just hurts. What if I never talk to Qui-Gon again? I have to remember everything.
--- Entry 59
When I came back, the first thing he did is hug me. I’m getting taller, stronger, but I know I’ll never be bigger than him, and I’ve never cared less than at that moment. I felt like I was safe, for that moment. I haven’t felt safe in a long time. Three years.
He pushed my hair away from my face, looked into my eyes, and led me over to a mat on the floor. We sat, and he started to talk to me. I can still remember every word:
“This is going to be hard, Obi-Wan. Not just on me, and not just because of our separation. I wish I could change things, but I can’t. I don’t believe even the Force can undo the past. Obi-Wan . . . you must never forget what Xanatos is, and what he is capable of, as well as what he has done. He will try to change you, in some way. He is trying to change all of us, and in a sense, he has. But you and I won’t change to whatever he wants us to be, whether it is slaves or – very confused Jedi.” He smiled a bit.
“I want you to remember my words, Obi-Wan. I am proud of you. I am glad I took you as my apprentice, even as I grieve for the pain it has caused you, because of Xanatos’ hatred of me. Despite that, I don’t think you regret it, and I know that I cannot. You are a bright soul, and you are a wonderful Jedi. Your patience, your diligence, and your vigilance all make you that.
“I love you. And this separation is not the end.”
I cried, after that. He said other things, and we talked of days gone, of the rest of the galaxy, the Jedi. I’ll remember that, too. But this will never leave my mind.
--- Entry 60
I can’t believe Xanatos is doing this. He keeps us in the same area, we’re in speaking distance every day – certainly every night – and we aren’t allowed to speak to each other. How are we supposed to do this?
I wonder if Xanatos would know if we talked. Does he bug everything?
--- Entry 61
He knew. I tried to talk to Qui-Gon, just a few words – Qui-Gon shook his head at me – and Qui-Gon got beaten for it. Xanatos must listen in on our conversations. He smiled at me this morning, then dragged Qui-Gon away. Damn the Hutt slime.
--- Entry 62
I’ve gotten used to not talking to Qui-Gon, even those he’s close. The thought disturbs me a little bit, that we didn’t fight it more. But how could we have fought? And even though we don’t have words, we can look at each other. I can see his thoughts behind his eyes, and I’m sure he can read me even better. I’m almost always near Xanatos during the day, so we can’t use the Force to speak, really, but I guess this is enough.
Xanatos has started talking to me. He doesn’t actually need me to respond, he just likes to talk to me. I don’t know why. I never know anything.
--- Entry 63
Qui-Gon can listen to me in the wild. I don’t want to say anymore, not here. But I’m so relieved.
--- Entry 64
Even though the shelters are all the Jedi have in the way of protection from the weather, I miss it somewhat. Xanatos has started making me sleep outside the house. I wonder if he’s getting suspicious – or just plain paranoid.
I think he has serious control issues with me.
--- Entry 65
Qui-Gon frowns whenever he sees me settling down for the night under the porch. I’m not too thrilled either.
--- Entry 66
I made the mistake of meeting Xanatos’ eyes yesterday. It was an accident. He was talking to me, as usual, and he said something that surprised me – he said he didn’t hate the Jedi all that much. I dropped my gaze almost immediately, but he still saw. He beat me for it in the house, which he usually doesn’t do.
I stumbled outside after the beating. I think Qui-Gon cleaned the mess up; I know I didn’t, and one of the Jedi had to.
The thought saddens me, but the emotion isn’t particularly strong. I wonder if I’m getting depressed.
--- Entry 67
I realized today that I’m really tan, my body weathered – especially from having to sleep outside, separated from the other Jedi. There’s no winter here, at least. Qui-Gon’s hair has started to grow out, almost falling into his eyes. He tries to encourage me whenever he can. But it’s so hard.
--- Entry 68
I definitely think I’m depressed.
--- Entry 69
What’s worse I think is not having the hope. That I’ll be able to talk to Qui-Gon again, which is what I had before. I can’t hardly think of the Jedi, of the escaped ones, how they’re doing. It’s just not real anymore.
I hate Xanatos. He makes me . . . Security can see me.
--- Entry 70
I think he found out about Qui-Gon and my late night meetings. He ties me outside.
--- Entry 71
I refused to get up that morning. When Xanatos called me, I didn’t respond. I just lay in the sand. He got angry pretty quickly, went after me. Grabbed me by my hair, jerked me up, and beat me. Qui-Gon doesn’t understand. But I just let myself fall back to the ground. The sand hurt, getting into my wounds, but I didn’t really care. So Xanatos’ beat me again, so badly I passed out.
When I woke up, he was still there. He told me to get up. I closed my eyes. I was too tired.
He left for a while, then came back with Qui-Gon. Xanatos struck him in the face first. Then he started to do more.
Qui-Gon said my name. I haven’t heard that for so long. I started to cry, but I still wouldn’t move. He was going to hurt Qui-Gon anyway. This was all to hurt Qui-Gon. I couldn’t play along.
Xanatos finally stopped. I remember that, though not all of the beating.
Then Xanatos picked me up, in his arms like I was a child – I didn’t know he was that strong, which is strange, I should have, but I didn’t – and carried me into the house. I heard Qui-Gon asking – I don’t want to say begging – for him not to hurt me. That I was just a child, I didn’t deserve any of this.
I’ve been here a few days now. One of the Jedi gave me my datapad. I put it under my pillow. I have a pillow now, and a bed. Xanatos cleaned me up himself, and then put me in here, one of the guest rooms. I don’t know why he’s bothering. I’m just so confused. I wake up sometimes to find him stroking my hair.
--- Entry 72
He’s started talking to me again. He tells me he wants me to respond. But he hasn’t punished me for not doing so, at least not yet. He’s just persistent. I don’t know why he’s being so – not kind, but . . .
--- Entry 73
I answered back today. He corrected me, told me to do it right, with my eyes down and ‘Master’.
I’m eighteen today.
--- Entry 74
He told me I’m still not allowed to talk to Qui-Gon, but he’s moved back into the shelter with the rest of the Jedi. They’ve been so kind to me. I think they know how hard it is, to be the focus of Xanatos’ constant attention. I know Qui-Gon knows. I can only guess at some of the things Xanatos did when he had us separated by distance.
I follow him around all day again, too.
--- Entry 75
I can tell I’ve changed. I’m more quiet than I used to be, and not that enforced quiet, either. I’m not as frightened of Xanatos as I used to be. Either of him hurting me, or hurting Qui-Gon. I think I’ve accepted it.
Xanatos and I talk to each other all morning, one day a week. Not usually about politics, but sometimes. He likes to teach me how he does things, how he used his influence to take over the political system. The takeover wasn’t, after all, just a matter of who had the bigger guns or more efficient weaponry. I find it interesting in an abstract sort of way.
He asks me my opinion about him, the things he does, the rumors we hear – not that I tell him all of the ones we hear, that security sometimes lets slip, but some. He seemed surprised the first time, when I answered him honestly.
Sometimes he lets me sit in the chair. Which I find a little weird, because the only time he ever treats me – or any of us – like a sentient being is when I’m hurt or depressed.
It’s a strange sort of affection, I think.
--- Entry 76
I just realized this, but no Jedi have died here for almost two years. Or at the camp, either.
--- Entry 77
It rained today. I think this is this planet’s version of winter, actually. It rains every few weeks. The humidity mostly takes care of the plantlife, but it does rain.
Xanatos let the Jedi stay in the shelters this time, but he’s making me stay in the house tonight. I suppose it makes sense, instead of me being under the porch.
If I go to the window on the south side, I can see Qui-Gon sitting outside. I don’t think he knows I can see him.
I never knew Qui-Gon cared for the rain.
--- Entry 78
Xanatos said something odd to me today. He told me I wasn’t like other Jedi. He didn’t say whether that was good or bad, but I think he meant it in a good way – at least from his perspective. I don’t know why he thinks that. All Jedi are different, but I am definitely still a Jedi. We all are.
--- Entry 79
I wonder if he wants me to not be like a ‘normal’ Jedi. Sometimes I feel like a favored pet, and pets . . . well, you train them to be what you want, don’t you?
---- Entry 80
Talking with Xanatos is like being in a battle. A mixture of stress, worry, and exhilaration. I hesitate to say the last because, well, for obvious reasons, but I’m finding it to be true. Xanatos has definite twisted opinions, but there is a strange kind of logic to his beliefs and arguments. And he doesn’t punish me for disagreeing, just – disobeying.
I think he likes having someone to talk to.
--- Entry 81
Things are going well. As they ever go.
--- Entry 82
I smiled at something Xanatos said today. Just an offhand comment about politicians as he was walking on the beach, and I was following. The other Jedi were, of course, staying out of sight. But after I smiled, I saw Qui-Gon. Just a glimpse, but the look on his face . . . Worry, concern, anger. Qui-Gon has always been so serene, so calm, it always startles me to see that.
I’m afraid some of that anger is directed at me.
--- Entry 83
Xanatos is confused, I think. I'm not totally sure. I can't always read him, though I've gotten better and better at it over the years. But I've been disobeying him nearly constantly, and he doesn't know why. I'm not sure I know why, though the fact of that memory of Qui-Gon keeps intruding gives me a clue.
It hurts to lay down, too.
--- Entry 84
I think my life is one of pain, of some type or another.
--- Entry 85
Xanatos found me crying today. He was out on the beach, I was by the porch. He hadn’t called me, so I should have stayed hidden, but I didn’t even notice him come up to me. I thought for a moment he was going to ask me what was wrong, but this is Xanatos I’m talking about here. He didn’t punish me, though, just told me to get him a drink of water, which I did. I was back in control by the time I got back.
He had me go with him to the chairs on the beach, and told me he was going to take a long break. I wasn’t supposed to talk or anything, just sit with him for a few hours.
By the time I woke up, he was gone.
--- Entry 86
Qui-Gon is getting older. That shouldn’t startle me, but it does. His hair has more gray, his face is more weathered.
--- Entry 87
I’m nineteen today. Five years here.
--- Entry 88
Security let it slip that a group of Jedi, escaping into the Outer Rim, was killed. Fifty Jedi, of all ages.
Everyone is quiet today. Xanatos noticed. He’s looking . . . smug. He walked right up to Qui-Gon, and smiled at him, especially when Qui-Gon wouldn’t meet his eyes, knowing better. Qui-Gon said something, I couldn’t hear what – Xanatos told me to stay away – and then I saw a tear slip down Qui-Gon’s face. I think I know what Qui-Gon said to Xanatos. ‘Is this what you want to see of me?’
Xanatos’ smile faded. He turned away, looking at me, watching me.
For once I didn’t care. Qui-Gon. I think my heart was breaking.
Xanatos walked away, and told me I didn’t have to follow. Qui-Gon and I spent what remained of the day staring at each other. I could see the grief in his eyes. I hope he could see the love I was trying to project in mine.
--- Entry 89
Qui-Gon seems okay.
--- Entry 90
I’ve changed my mind; I’m not quite a favored pet. Xanatos does treat me like a sentient being at time, even if it’s rare. And he reacts. Another report came in, and he didn’t lord it over Qui-Gon. Instead, he looked at me, and told me I could take the day off. It has me worried.
Qui-Gon has me more worried. He’s more quiet. It’s a weird thing to say, I’m looking it at it as I write this, but I can tell, even if I can’t talk to him. This enforced silence has caused me to pay more attention to the little physical cues to his emotional state. Sometimes I’m nearly frantic, I want to talk to him so much. But I won’t have him beaten for that.
--- Entry 91
Xanatos hugged me today. Let me write that again: Xanatos hugged me today. It was in the house, no one was around, but he just – embraced me for a minute. It was automatic that I put my arms around him.
I just realized that today is the day his father died.
---- Entry 92
I can only come to the conclusion that in some bizarre fashion, Xanatos has become emotionally attached to me.
I’ve been thinking about that all day. Xanatos has been giving me suspicious looks, so I must not be hiding my disbelief all that well, even if he doesn’t know what it’s over.
I’m starting to wonder if I’m becoming . . . emotional in regards to Xanatos, too. First I don’t hate him, which is really a perfectly normal reaction. I bet a lot of the Jedi hate him, Jedi or not. But I don’t. I felt sadness when I realized that a week ago was the anniversary of his father’s death. (Were they close? They must have been. Closer than normal, anyway.)
I have changed, and I don’t think I like it. And I wonder if Xanatos planned it, keeping me separate from everyone, the Jedi, Qui-Gon most of all. I think I'm the only family Xanatos has.
--- Entry 93
Maybe it was partially planned. I think part of it is that Xanatos likes causing Qui-Gon emotional pain, more than physical pain, and I was the easiest route to that end. Logical.
But what do I do now?
--- Entry 94
I’m not the only one who’s changed, am I?
--- Entry 95
Less emotional torture of Qui-Gon (separation still exists)
Taking care of me when I was less than pleased with life.
Tending to me personally.
This list is slightly disturbing.
More than slightly. Changed my mind.
--- Entry 96
Possibly better treatment of not only myself, but all the Jedi.
Continued survival of Jedi.
Perhaps perhaps perhaps he won’t hunt us quite so much anymore.
If he knows I’m going along deliberately, he could hurt or kill me, or others.
It will hurt Qui-Gon.
--- Entry 97
Another pro: could he let me speak to Qui-Gon again, if only for my sake?
--- Entry 98
Xanatos definitely has a superiority complex. He also has wicked (in a good way – mostly) sense of humor.
Not what I expected.
--- Entry 99
I think I was expecting some maniacal monster, and while Xanatos is both in some ways, he doesn’t really act crazy. His actions are reasoned and measured. He has started telling me random things about not only his life now, but before. When he was a Jedi, when he first turned. I think I finally saw more than a Dark Jedi. I didn’t know a Dark Jedi could have such a mixture of feelings. I thought they were consumed with hate, and Xanatos is, but he also isn’t. He laughs. His idea of play usually involves killing of some type (though not of Jedi; he takes that seriously), usually with politicians and rivals.
I think it could be said I’m falling into my own trap, but I don’t think so. I hope not. I hope I’m seeing more, not less.
--- Entry 100
I love Alderaani berries. Why didn’t they ever have these at the Temple?
--- Entry 101
Qui-Gon is growing more and more disturbed by my and Xanatos’ interactions. I think this bizarre closeness we’re gaining is becoming more obvious. I’m sorry.
--- Entry 102
I am so, so sorry. I love you, Master.
--- Entry 103
Xanatos appears to have lost interest in toying with Qui-Gon. I’m relieved, but slightly nervous.
--- Entry 104
The piece of Hutt filth suggested, implied, that he was considering killing Qui-Gon. I couldn’t think. My vision blurred with rage, and the next thing I knew I was on the floor, in the hall, and Xanatos was beating me. I felt so terrified. Not for myself, the beating was practically unimportant, but Qui-Gon. Xanatos couldn’t kill him. No. NO.
He didn’t tie me up, which surprises me. I guess he thinks I’m smart enough not to do anything stupid. But I have to act. The sun is setting. I have to think.
--- Entry 105
During the night, I decided on another tactic.
I guess I basically asked him if he loved me, as a student and a teacher, subordinate and superior, or even slave and master. And he basically said yes. He said he thought it could exist, but I know . . . there’s something there, even if he doesn’t know it. As a brother, perhaps, I don't know.
He didn’t say anything about Qui-Gon.
--- Entry 106
Took him three weeks, but he told me he had changed his mind. I had suspected so far earlier – in fact, I wonder now if the remark was designed to get the reaction it did. Though if that was the case, I’m surprised the beating was, well, so light. I don’t know. I think a lot of Xanatos’ attention has shifted towards me, rather than Qui-Gon.
I hope to the Force he doesn’t think I’d ever be his pupil.
--- Entry 107
It’s getting harder to input into this datapad. Less time. I sleep in the house now. The shelter was revamped to something more comfortable. The beatings continue. Qui-Gon is giving me hard looks now. (So sorry.)
Xanatos has started quizzing me on stuff he talked to me about before: politics, the Force, all of it. He seems pleased despite my frequent disagreement. That I remember?
--- Entry 108
I guess things have fallen into a routine of sorts. Xanatos and our discussions, Qui-Gon’s continued worrying.
--- Entry 109
Xanatos is changing. He seems calmer, more settled. In a strange way I feel happy for him. That’s still hard to admit.
I think Qui-Gon has figured out what I’m up to now. We’ve gone back to an easy peace between us.
--- Entry 110
Xanatos really doesn’t expect me to be his student, per se. He likes my company, for some bizarre reason. Actually, I think it has to do with the fact that I really can’t hurt him, for various reasons. He can trust me because I have no power over him. Except that trust does give me a power, in a way. But I’d never hurt Xanatos just to hurt him, even if it weren’t for the power he held over the rest of the Jedi, and therefore me.
I think he knows that, too.
--- Entry 111
The Jedi and what remains of the Republic have set up a provisional government in the Outer Rim. Xanatos is negotiating with them now. We won’t be released, I know that much, but it gives us all hope that things out there are getting better.
--- Entry 112
It’s been a while. I got to talk to Qui-Gon today; Xanatos let me.
Qui-Gon is here.
--- Entry 113
It’s been almost a year since I last wrote in this. I didn’t realize it had been so long.
It’s hard to really remember how much things have changed. It happened so gradually it seems normal to me now. But looking over past entries, things have changed – a lot. I can call Xanatos by his name and get away with it. He ruffles my hair. There’s a peace treaty between him and the New Republic.
And most of all, I’m talking to Qui-Gon again, every day. I don’t need to write down to remember that first meeting.
I think I’m happy.
--- Entry 114
Hello, Obi-Wan. I can see now why you asked me to read this. The truth is, I hardly know what to say now. It is strange seeing all this from your perspective. I don’t think our opinions on the past seven years will ever quite agree, but that’s all right. I changed you, watching you grow up here, and you changed me. I have to laugh that you still don’t understand why.
You’re an easy person to care for, Obi-Wan. Enough that by it, through it, and by time I don’t hate Qui-Gon anymore. Forgiveness is beyond my capabilities, but you know that.
And the Jedi. You don’t speak of them much here, for all that they were so much a part of your every day life. I think you spoke of me and Qui-Gon most because you trying to understand us, trying to get through what was happening. And the Jedi were simply a steady background to it all. Force, do you know how strange it is for me sometimes, knowing that I have several hundred Jedi virtually creating another Temple in my backyard? Not that there are really any new youngsters coming along anymore, but in every other way . . . it’s like going to the past again, in a very twisted fashion.
I can’t really say I’m sorry, either. I know I caused you pain, but I’m not one to look back. Good thing you aren’t either, or we wouldn’t get along as well as we do.
Thank you, Obi-Wan, for letting me see this. I know this journal was simply a catharsis for your life, but it is more than that to me. And to think I forgot that I ever gave it to you.
I’ll see you tomorrow, Obi-Wan. I didn’t want to wake you. Tomorrow, we can talk. It’ll be a loose morning.
--- Entry 115